May Compilation

Male zabulon skipper at Cape May Point State Park, photo'd by Gibson Reynolds on May 26.

Male zabulon skipper at Cape May Point State Park, photo’d by Gibson Reynolds on May 26.

Thanks to each of the 37 observers who contributed to our log in May….

Amy Gaberlein, Barb Wiley, Barry Marts, Brian Johnson, Chip Krilowicz, Chris Herz. Chris Tonkinson, Clay Sutton. Cynthia Allen. Dave Amadio, Doyle Dowdell, Gibson Reynolds, Jack Miller, Jack Connor, Jean Gutsmuth. Jesse Amesbury, Jesse Connor, Jim Dowdell, Karl Lukens, Kathy Flynn, Marilyn Henry. Matt Orsie, Matt Webster, Michael Drake, Mike Crewe, Pat Perkins, Pat Sutton, Raymond Simpson, Rick Borchelt, Sam Galick, Sam Wilson, Sandra Keller, Steven Glynn, Sylvia Armstrong, Tom Reed, Tom Stock, and Will Kerling…

…we compiled more than 1480 reports (and ~4300 individual butterflies) for the month .

We found 55 species in May and reached a total of 56 for the year. (If you can name the one species reported earlier in 2014 but not seen in May, you are paying very close attention to our log! Answer below.*)

The relatively cool weather of March through May this year may explain why South Jersey’s butterfly sequence is unfolding a little more slowly than normally. As of the last day of the month our year’s total was slightly behind last year’s May 31st total (when we had 57 species) and farther behind the super spring of 2012 (when we had recorded 65 species by the end of May) and also the good spring of 2011 (when we had 62 species by the end of May).

Will Kerling added Aaron’s skipper to our year’s total yesterday, June 2, so we have now reached 57 for the year.

Some of the other late May/early June butterflies not yet recorded in 2014 that we might expect over the next two or three weeks include Appalachian brown, common wood-nymph, little glassywing, swarthy skipper, Delaware skipper, salt-marsh skipper, and the five Satyrium hairstreaks: coral, Edward’s, banded, striped, and northern oak.

Two rarer species seen by May 31 in past years that we can at least hope to see (fingers crossed?) in the next couple of weeks are little yellow (seen in May, 2012) and harvester (seen in May, 2013).

Here’s the spreadsheet in pdf format. Green = new for 2014; orange = first report of the month. Hit the + sign for easier viewing. Let me know if you see any discrepancies.

May 2014 Spreadsheet

*Q: And what is that single species seen earlier this year but not in May?
A: Variegated fritillary. Jack Miller and Rich Cech found one individual at McNamara WMA on April 26 and we are still awaiting our second report of that butterfly.

Keep at it, everyone!

Mating azures at Cape May Point on May 26, photo'd by Gibson Reynolds.

Mating azures at Cape May Point on May 26, photo’d by Gibson Reynolds.

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